About Stamp Collectors - Part 4

In the United States the great International exhibitions are held without benefit of government subsidy. Our Post Office does take cognizance of these affairs by issuing special stamps to commemorate the event. Proceeds from the sale of these, goes to the Post Office. The sale of these has run to a total as high as one million dollars on occasion. Thus, while at the 1956 International Exhibition the Post Office did undertake the cost of constructing its own facilities at the show, far from being subsidized the U. S. International Exhibitions have proven a source of considerable income to the Post Office. To stage one of these great exhibitions, stamp collectors and stamp dealers, hundreds of them, subscribe a fund to launch the affair. Then each gives up an enormous amount of time - often extending over two years - serving on committees necessary to stage the event. More often than not this voluntary service involves considerable financial sacrifice, even direct out of pocket expense, for none of which are the volunteers reimbursed. To complete the picture these same workers turn around and pay their own admission to the show, pay dues into the sponsoring society, and, when the occasion demands, make outright donations.

The only reimbursement involved is that of the original "guarantee fund." If, as and when the show has been able to pay off all of its expenses and anything is left over the subscribers to the Guarantee Fund are reimbursed to the amount of their pledges.

Souvenir Sheet
Fipex Souvenir Sheet

The income from such exhibitions is derived in a large measure from rental of the exhibition frames and rental of dealer booths. The same volunteers who have subscribed the Guarantee Fund, have served on the committees now pay the going fees to rent frames needed to exhibit their collections. What manner of men and women are these who give their all so willingly, so enthusiastically? They are just plain folk, whether rich or poor, who have discovered a hobby that has enriched their lives and made them "kinsfolk" with myriads of people all over the world. They are white and colored, jew and gentile; they are little kids and grown adults, learned professors and freshman students, bank presidents and bank clerks, millionaires and near paupers. They are, in fact, people from every walk of life, happy and eager to work together to enlarge and promote their hobby, a hobby in which they have found a common denominator with their fellow man. There are no better people in all the world!